Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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OTTONI, Theophilo Benedicto (ot-to'-nee), Brazilian journalist, born in Do Serro, 27 November, 1807; died in Rio Janeiro, 17 October, 1869. At the age of fifteen he composed sundry patriotic poems, which revealed a precocious talent. He began his studies in 1823 in Do Serro, in 1826 went to Rio Janeiro to finish them, and in 1828 entered the navy as a midshipman. While at the university he had became affiliated with the Liberal party, wrote in the "Astrea" under the pen-name of O joven pernambucano, and was a correspondent for the "Astro de Minas" and the "Echo do Serro," and a member and secretary of the secret " Club dos Amigos Unidos." In 1830 he resigned from the navy and retired to his native province of Minas Geraes, where he engaged in commerce, and was editor of the "Sentinella do Serro," a republican opposition paper. In 1838 he was elected to congress, and in 1841 he ardently opposed the creation of the new council of state. When in 1842 the chamber was dissolved, the Liberal party in Sao Paulo and Minas Geraes rose in arms. Ottoni placed himself at the head of the insurgents, and after the rout of Santa Luzia was captured, but the jury of Ouro Preto acquitted him, and he was included in the amnesty that was granted by the emperor in 1844. In 1846 he was vice-president of the chamber of deputies, and as such represented congress at the baptism of the imperial princess. In 1847 he founded the Mucury company, which seemed to offer a great future to the north of Minas, and he lost all his fortune and ruined his health in this scheme. In 1861 he was elected to the senate, where he sat until his death.
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